Letters to the Editor: January 21 – 28, 2010

Shame on All Who Denigrate Civic Activists


In your most recent editorial, you praised city council members for standing up to citizen activists. This position was taken by several council persons over the course of the debate about the election. I have had enough of it.

I am left unsure how I can best express my opinion when formal channels such as speaking at a council meeting are no longer valid and those who remain officially silent are cited as the majority. As a concerned citizen who spoke at several council meetings, I remain shocked that the elected officials and you, the editor, would find it so easy to dismiss what those of us who are active in the city have to say. Without its citizen activists, the City would have no-one volunteering on any boards or commissions, no-one organizing community service organizations like Falls Church Arts and Citizens for Better City, no-one organizing community wide events like Watch Night or summer concerts, no-one participating in city clean-ups or ivy pulls, and no-one finding their way to step up and serve as an elected official. It is a fact that what makes this place, this City, so great is its volunteers.

Shame on you and shame on the council for denigrating these volunteers for simply asking that more study be put into the election issue or for true consideration of a referendum.

Gordon Theisz

Falls Church


Kick-Off Event Saturday for the Race


Last May, the Falls Church community exceeded all of our expectations when 84 teams, many of them made up of high school and middle school students, participated in the 2009 Falls Church Relay For Life and raised more than $171,000 to support the American Cancer Society’s fight against cancer. This more than doubled the number of teams participating and the amount raised from together the year before. Altogether, more than 800 community members took part in this inspiring overnight event at the George Mason High School track.

On Sunday January 24, we invite the community to join us for the Kickoff Event for this year’s Relay at the cafetorium at Mary Ellen Henderson Middle High School from 2:30 to 4 p.m. This will give interested persons the chance to find out more about what Relay For Life is all about, join or start a team and share fundraising ideas. We are also actively recruiting volunteers to help out in a variety of capacities with this year’s event, which will be held on May 22-23.

Finally, we want to encourage cancer survivors to join us, both for the Kickoff Event and at the relay itself.  Relay For Life is designed to remember those who have died from cancer, as well as celebrate those who have survived the disease.  The theme of this year’s Relay is “More Birthdays.” We are committed to working to build a world where fewer of our friends and family members die of cancer, and more birthdays are celebrated. If you are a cancer survivor, please consider celebrating with us!

For more information on the Falls Church Relay and how to get involved, please check out www.fallschurchrelay.org.

Katie Clinton & Terri Rollo

Co-Chairs, Relay For Life of Falls Church


Valleybrook is Now Montessori School of Northern Virginia


Last week, Falls Church News-Press reader Bill Lucas wrote in a Letter to the Editor about his family memories of the Valleybrook School in Falls Church and the wonderful people who made it the special place it was. A parent at our school read his letter and brought it to my attention.

Longtime Valleybrook owners Charlie and Monica Flynn retired and closed Valleybrook at the conclusion of the 2007-08 school year. In August 2008, Mr. and Mrs. Flynn agreed to sell Valleybrook to the Montessori School of Northern Virginia. MSNV, located in Annandale, was the first Montessori school founded in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

After a lengthy special exception process with Fairfax County, MSNV gained permission to operate the school under new ownership. MSNV will renovate the building with green features and a unique natural playground. MSNV Valleybrook is scheduled to open as a second campus for students ages 2-5, in Fall 2010. Applications for the inaugural class are being accepted and we look forward to seeing even more students from the Falls Church community.

On a warm afternoon in early November 2009, parents, alumni and staff representing both MSNV and Valleybrook gathered for a ceremonial groundbreaking. For those who attended, including some neighbors, this was a wonderful way to acknowledge the many years of happy memories created at this lovely meadow campus and launch the future of MSNV-Valleybrook.

Betsy Mitchell

Head of School, Montessori School of Northern Virginia


Parent Thanks Reporter for Sports News


I just wanted to take a moment to thank Alex Prewitt for all his George Mason High School sports coverage in the News-Press, both on line and in print, during the last few weeks. Not only is it great to have the coverage, but Alex does such a great job capturing the key moments of the game and making the article a great read. I certainly hope he continues practicing the journalist craft. He is exceptional.

Thanks Alex.

Craig Cheney

Falls Church

Letters to the Editor may be submitted to letters@fcnp.com or via our online form here. Letters should be limited to 350 words and may be edited for content, clarity and length. To view the FCNP’s letter and submission policy, please click here.